Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Our Egyptian Study

We are currently working our way through Sonlight Core B. For the last two months we have been studying Egypt. This is actually the second time in two years that we have studied Egypt....you wouldn't know it however to talk to our children. They remember exactly nothing from our last history lesson on Egypt. At that time we were reading through Story of The World. I was apparently correct when I felt it was not the right curriculum for our young children. It is an amazing set of books and I learned quite a bit from them, just not quite right for younger children who need a more visual learning style.

So here we are spending two months studying Egypt for the second time. I decided to add quite a few hands on activities to our History curriculum this time around.

Our first activity was to make the pyramids out of sugar cubes! I found an old box out in the garage and flattened it out for the girls. They then looked at the map and set up the construction paper desert and Nile River. It took us several attempts to figure out how to stack the sugar cubes (which are now called "Sugar Dots" if you are looking for them in the store). We finally found that hot glue was the only way to go about this project. 

We decided to make the  Great Pyramid, the Pyramid of Mycerinus, and the Pyramid of Chephran. Along with the Queen's Pyramid and a few boats sailing down the Nile River.

After the girls finished their pyramids our oldest daughter mixed her paints to get the "perfect brown" and started painting the cubes. I attempted to tell her that originally the pyramids were white thanks to Limestone overlays...she was having none of it however.

 Next up was a simple double crown project. Just a few seconds and a few pieces of construction paper and we were done.

I had to do some type of map project with the girls.....why not add in chocolate and icing? We made two giant chocolate chip cookies and then "painted" the landmarks on with icing, sugar cube pyramids, and chocolate kiss mountains.

This is just your standard chocolate chip cookie recipe divided into two small sheet pans. Flatten out evenly in the pan and bake till the center is cooked through. I believe it took about 5min longer than the package directions for individual cookies. Check on it regularly however since there is nothing worse than burnt cookies!

For the icing we divided about 1/2 cup of white icing into 4 small ziplock baggies. We added blue food coloring to two of the bags and green food coloring to the other two bags. Work the icing and food coloring together to get the desired color. After they were properly combined we snipped the corner off the bag and pipped the icing onto the cookie to represent the Nile and the Marsh lands.

I used a sharp knife to cut down the sugar cubes into pyramids...I do not recommend this being done by anyone other than an adult!

Addy our chocolate kiss mountains and you have a cookie map of Egypt!

Mummy week was a fun week in our house! We decided to make our own Mummy this time around. I however was not thrilled with the idea of mummifying a chicken. So we decided to make a Mummy Apple!

This was seriously easy. Simply peel and core your apple. I added a face...which might have left my husband shaking his head. Then place your Apple Pharaoh into  a jar and cover with 2 parts salt 1 part Baking soda. Let him sit for 1 week and then remove from the "Natron". Boom! You have a mummified Apple Pharaoh!

After the Natron solution the mummy would have been wrapped and placed in it's burial chamber....so we did that as well. We wrapped up one of the girls dolls in toilet paper and then they decorated a cardboard "tomb" for their doll.

I found this pretty amazing Mummy book at our local Goodwill for $0.10. Unwrap the Mummy! a Four-Foot-long, Fact-Filled, Pop-Up Mummy to Explore! is a 4 foot pop up Mummy with a ton of fun facts pertaining to Mummies and ancient Egypt. Our girls actually fought over who got to read the facts and discover all of the hidden sections within the book. Totally worth the dime I paid for it and a wonderful addition to the core books for this unit.

Next up we have the necessary Egyptian Feast!

This could not have been an easier dinner. Our costumes consisted of a little bit of black eyeliner, and a few white sheets.

Luckily the Egyptians had a pretty simple diet. We made a roast chicken and served it with fresh berries, whole grain bread, and honey for sweetness. I think the biggest hit of all was eating with their fingers since the Egyptians didn't use forks!

Overall we had a lovely time studying Egypt during the last two months and I am positive that the children will actually remember some of the facts in the future!

If you have done an Egyptian study I would love to hear about it!

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